tv CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley CBS September 4, 2015 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
>> pelley: unemployment falls to a seven-year low, but there's a gusher of pink slips in the oil patch. also tonight, ominous signs that russia may be getting into syria's civil war. when you're the front-runner, the questions get harder. >> you're asking me names that, ridiculous. >> pelley: we'll take you inside a wildfire to learn why they're bigger than ever. and steve hartman with the keys to a joyful life, 88 of them. captioning sponsored by cbs this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley. >> pelley: at long last, the economy has clawed its way back to the days before the financial meltdown and the great recession.
unemployment fell in august to 5.1%, and have a look at this-- that is the lowest rate since way ck in april of 2008. employers added 173,000 jobs last month, less than forecast but healthy. anthony mason now on who's hiring. >> reporter: you can see the signs of a strengthening job market at hightower, a commercial real estate technology company in new york. c.e.o. brandon weber started the company with two partners just two years ago. >> in the last 18 months alone, we've added 50 jobs just here in new york. >> reporter: jobs that typically pay well, in the upper five figures, and webber says the pace of hiring is accelerating. >> a lot of that is a function of can we find the right people? >> reporter: good jobs are back, according to a new study out of georgetown university. of 6.6 million jobs added in the recovery, the study found 2.9 million, or 44%, are good jobs
that pay more than $53,000 annually, most with benefits. almost all these jobs have gone to college graduates. >> i started applying for jobs in january of my senior year. i probably applied to over 50 positions. >> reporter: after graduating college two years ago, 23-year-old bianca soliz found work as a paralegal before moving to customer relations at hightower in january. >> i'm actually making more here at hightower, and the perks are great. >> reporter: across the country, the number of people forced to take part-time work has also been dropping by 740,000 over the past year. >> i think the fact that we're starting to shift to a greater share of full-time workers means that businesses perhaps are feeling a little bit more confident. >> reporter: michelle mayer is an economist with bank of america merrill lynch. >> i think we're seeing an environment where the labor market is improving. it's showing continued tightening. that's quite encouraging. >> reporter: but has it
improved enough for the federal reserve to begin razeeing interest rates when it meets the week after next? the fed wants to start hiking but the stock market's continuing volatility-- it was down another 272 point today-- could force the fed to wait a scott. thank you, anthony. but in the oil industry, as always, boom has gone to bust. oil prices have been the lowest in years, $46 a barrel today. and that's cost 100,000 american jobs so far this year. here's omar villafranca. >> let's go, let's go. >> reporter: wendy post had worked in the oil and gas business in houston for 20 years before she lost her job in june. >> i've always been working. it's been pretty consistent. this is the first time that it's been to where, wow, i'm really concerned. >> thanks for helping. >> reporter: post needs that income to take care of her special needs son, duane.
she has applied for more than 100 jobs with no success. >> i'd say it's-- it's like playing the slot machine. it's just you keep throwing your resume out there like you're throwing dollars or quarters out there and hoping one hits. >> reporter: due to low global demand, the texas oil industry has been shedding jobs this year. houston-based energy giant halliburton eliminated 14,000 jobs. baker hughes cut 13,000. >> my heart and my sole sowell is in this industry. >> reporter: the dow turn has also hit white-collar oil workers like darryl swilley. we he lost his corner office and six-figure salary. >> it was the first time in my life i had to file for employment. it was absolutely gut wrenching for me to do it this time. >> reporter: cheap gas is good news for drivers but it isn't helping the oil business. scott, gas prices are at a 10-year low, dipping below $2.80
a gallon. >> pelley: omar villafranca tonight. omar, thanks very much. today, $50,000 reward was offered for the killers of charles gliniewicz, and in houston, thousands gave a last salute to sheriffs deputy darren goforth who was ambushed at a gas station. the suspect in custody has a history of mental illness. kim davis spent a second day in jail today. she is the rowan county, kentucky, court clerk who refused court orders orders to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples. one of her deputies did issue those licenses today, and dean reynolds is there. dean. >> reporter: scott, a procession of same-sex couples came here holding hands and seeking validation for their relationships in the institution of marriage. there was plenty of joy on one side of this issue but a lot of
anger and acrimony on the other side. the new licenses were held up into the air in a kind of gesture of victory after a string of defeats at the hands of the rowan county clerk, kim davis, who had refused to deliver those licenses because of religious reasons of her own. lawyers for davis said that the new licenses are basically worthless because they don't carry her signature, but a federal judge disagrees. and at the county jail where davis was sent for her defiance of that judge, lawyers told us she is in good spirit. confined to cell 151, she sits there alone in an orange jailhouse jumpsuit with a bible by her side. >> pelley: dean reynolds in rowan county, dean, thanks. tonight, pentagon correspondent daviddavid martin is breaking a story with ominous implications it's prospect of u.s. and russian
warplanes fighting on opposite sides in the skies over syria. >> reporter: it's a development that caught u.s. intelligence by surprise. russia has set up an air traffic control tower and modular housing units for hundreds of personnel at an airfield near syria's mediterranean port of latikia. at the same time, russia has requested the necessary overflight rights to fly military cargo aircraft into the airfield. some u.s. intelligence analysts believe russia is preparing to insert combat aircraft into syria, presumably to conduct strikes against rebel forces threatening its longtime ally, the regime of bashar al-assad. one u.s. official said russian military intervention in syria would be a game changer. among other things, raising the possibility of run-ins with u.s. warplanes conducting airstrikes against isis in syria. however, other analysts caution russia could simply be gearing up for a humanitarian relief operation for the tens of thousands of syrian civilians forced by the fighting to flee
their homes. appearing at an economic conference, russia's president putin said although he continues to supply the assad regime with arms, military intervention in syria is "not yet on our agenda." but, scott, given putin's track record of denying russian military involvement in ukraine, u.s. officials say they are not putting much stock in his public statements about syria. >> pelley: david martin at the pentagon. today, a syrian man went home to bury his wife and two swhons drowned in a desperate attempt to escape the violence, part of the biggest refugee crisis since world war ii. this haunting photograph shows the body of his son, three-year-old aylan. holly williams has more on this. >> reporter: his tiny body shrouded in white, aylan kurdi was laid to rest today with his brother and his mother in kobane, the war-ravaged town they fled.
the boy's father, abdullah, was the only member of the family to survive. he dreamed of a better life for his sons, but instead, he returned to syria to bury them. "there are no words to describe this," he said. "may god give me strength." the image of aylan kurdi lying lifeless on the beach provoked horror and then outrage. at the funeral this mourner railed at countries in the west that have accepted so few refugees. "what do you have to say now?" she asked. "what does your conscience tell you now?" it's a tragedy unfolding daily as hundreds of thousands of people gamble with their lives to flee war and poverty. aylan's parents paid a human smuggler around $4,000 for a crossing in a rubber dinghy that
quickly overturned in rough seas. the family had lived through four years of civil war in syria and wanted to escape violence and fear. but now their hopes, like their country, have been shattered. four suspected human smugglers have now reportedly been detained in relation to aylan kurdi's death. but, scott, that won't do anything to fix the real cause of this catastrophe-- syria's deadly conflict. >> pelley: holly williams on the syrian border with turkey for us tonight. holly, thank you. now, there's a big development in this crisis now. late today, austria's chancellor said that his country and germany will now allow the migrants to enter their territory. but on the route through hungary, police have been forcing the refugees off trains and into camps. frustrated, tired, and hungry, hundreds of them took off
walking today, and charlie d'agata went with them. >> reporter: worn out but defiant, they mustered what energy they had left and set off on a 300-mile trek to germany. thousands of migrants have been stranded for weeks at budapest rail station, blocked from leaving the country. today, they chose to walk rather than spend another night in hungary. at times, the line was more than a half-mile long. they say they're walking less out of protest, the fact that they just didn't have any choice. they couldn't remain in that train station, and they don't trust the hungarian government to help them. and they're going to continue walking until they reach the border. the 90 degree heat soon took its toll. this man and his infant son had to take a break, but they were soon up again, anxious to keep up with the crowd. someone lent ishmael, a cardiologist from iblib, a bike
for his three children. >> reporter: and they're determined not to be forced into camps like this one on the serbian border where today migrants fought hungarian police to break free. 15-year-old al attar jihad is headed to germany to be reunited with his father. his mother stayed behind in damascus. would you let your mother do this, too? >> no, no, i don't like. >> reporter: are you happy to be walking? >> no. >> reporter: they have a long way to go, but walking is what got them this far. we're on the main highway leading to the austrian border, scott exrkt migrants have bedded down for the night. but over there you see buses that the hungarian government has provided, they say to help
migrants get to the border, but they're so worried, they want us to photograph them getting on those buses in case they're taken to a refugee camp instead. >> pelley: charlie d'agata with the crisis all around him, charlie, thanks. still ahead on the cbs evening news, trump trips over foreign affairs. and a musical magellan circumnavigating the world on a piano. and get us energized! i'm new ensure active high protein. i help you recharge with nutritious energy and strength to keep you active. come on pear, it's only a half gallon. i'll take that. yeeeeeah! new ensure active high protein. 16 grams of protein and 23 vitamins and minerals. all in 160 calories. ensure. take life in. you tuck here... you tuck there. if you're a toe tucker... because of toenail fungus, ask your doctor now about prescription kerydin.
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>> no, not the kurds, the quds forces, the iranian revolutionary guards, quds forces, the bad guys. >> pelley: let's turn to one of the good guys, john dickerson, our airveggor of "face the nation." john, trump seems to stumble a lot but never seems to fall. >> reporter: that's right. his rhetoric was he didn't need to know the details. he could hire the right people and delegate. this type of thing has tripped up candidates before. george w. bush in 2000 could only name one of four world leaders when quizzed and he won the presidency. >> pelley: vice president biden has been agonizing about whether to run. >> i will be straightforward with you, the most relevant factor in my decision is whether my family and i have the emotional energy to run. >> pelley: john, what are you hearing? >> reporter: i can't think of a candidate in the modern era whose deliberations have played
way. the vice president is now saying out loud what we've been hearing for some time from those close to him, which is the emotional current are still swirling after the death of his son, beau biden, last may. the loss is acute, which holds the vice president back. but beau biden also encouraged his dad to run, which compels him. sources tell me the vice president may take until the end of the fall to make his decision. another source who knows biden well said while early preparations are definitely moving forward for a campaign, that does not mean the emotional hurdle has been cleared and without, that scott, nothing will happen. >> pelley: john dickerson, anchor of "face the nation," thanks, john. candidate carly fiorina aced hugh hewitt's test, and she will be john's guest on sunday on "face the nation." wildfire up close next. you're certainly not alone. fortunately, many have found a different kind of medicine that lowers blood sugar. imagine what it would be like to love your numbers.
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by getting up close. >> reporter: cross the west this year, wildfires are burning hotter and faster. >> the fire is moving sometimes a mile an hour, well beyond the capabilities of ground crews. >> reporter: dennis burns is a fire behavior analyst. he says massive amounts of dry brush and millions of drought-stricken streez trooez are burning fast. that's helping flames spread to healthy trees. when you look out in this forest and see all these dead trees, what's going through your mind? >> that if we get another ignition, quite possibly people are going to die because the fire is going to travel so fast i don't know that people are even going to have the time to get out of the fire's front. >> reporter: this is a rare view from inside the fire, less than a minute after flames appear, the heat generates powerful wind gusts other blowing the fire in all directions. within two minutes, flames incinerate trees and engulf the camera. it happened so fast just like that. >> yeah, i think it's three minutes of video before the camera shuts off.
>> reporter: carol ewell leads the u.s. forest service fire behavior assessment team. they're using flame-resistant camera equipment and sensors placed in the path of an 80,000-acre fire burning in california's sierra national forest. the technology helps them understand how to better fight fires. >> which way is the fire going? is it only going to travel uphill or is it also flanking and going side-hill at the same time. >> that video will show you if you're in front of a fire, you're not going to survive it. >> reporter: there's nothing you could do to stop that. >> absolutely nothing. >> reporter: last week alone, the u.s. forest service spent a quarter of a billion dollars fighting wildfires. and, scott, the money that congress has allocated for fire suppression is already gone. >> pelley: carter evans in california for us tonight, carter, thank you. in the mood for a melody? the piano man is next. it's easy to love your laxative when that lax loves your body back.
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>> >> pelley: finally tonight, steve hartman took a walk in the park, and as you would expect, he ran into something unexpected. here's steve "on the road." >> reporter: catskill park in upstate new york has 700,000 acres of emptiness. so of all the things you might expect to see emerging from the morning mist here, a guy pushing a piano probably isn't one of them. >> i think i could do it. >> reporter: and, yet, that's exactly what we found. a fellow named dotan negrin pushing 400 pounds of piano through the wilderness. has he never heard of a harmonica? >> that's why i do it. i do it because not everybody can do it. i do it for the challenge. >> reporter: why not a grand piano? you're not up for that much of a challenge. >> i don't know. >> reporter: and, really, this
isn't just about the challenge of hauling a piano to an improbable place. this is more with the joy it brings once it gets there. needless to say, for beached goers, it beat the heck out of listen to someone else's boom box, and for dotan, it it beats playing pretty much anywhere else. >> i get to play piano in this amazing stead setting. it's like this beautiful auditorium. >> reporter: and catskill park is just his latest stop in his piano around the world tour. he started in 2010, quit his job as an art move in new york city and began moving his piano instead. he has traveled literally from the redded wood forest to the gulf stream wateres of key west. he has taken the thing to central america and europe, too, always finding an unlikely place, even in the most well-traveled cities. dotan pays for this through tips
and donations. >> that woman just gave me 100 francs. >> reporter: so far, he has barely broken even. so far, it hasn't mattered much. >> i want to wake up every morning excited to see what would happen next. that way, like, you know, i'm on my death bed, i can look back and be like, yeah, i did this awesome thing when i was 24. >> reporter: some pianists dream of carnegie hall, but dotan negrin dreams even bigger. steve hartman, "on the road," in the catskill mountains. >> pelley: and on that note, that's the cbs evening news for tonight. for all of us at cbs news all around the world, i'm scott pelley. see you sunday on "60 minutes." captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh